Ener1 Announces Advances Toward Commercialization of Li-Ion Batteries

December 14, 2006 by Jeff Shepard

Ener1, Inc. announced that its battery subsidiary, EnerDel, Inc. has recently made several strides forward in its commercialization plans for lithium-ion batteries. These steps are part of EnerDel's multifaceted corporate initiative to take advantage of synergy with affiliated companies and alliance partners. As indicated by its latest notice of patent allowance, EnerDel continues to build its intellectual property portfolio while progressing in commercializing its lithium battery technologies.

First, EnerDel has worked with PrioVista Laboratories, Inc. to complete the installation of new furnace equipment that it will use to develop active battery electrode materials in-house. The high capacity furnace can be used to make Lithium Titanate, Lithium Manganese, Lithium Nickel Oxide and other materials. While EnerDel will also work with outside material companies to support mass- production, access to the new furnace equipment will immediately enhance EnerDel's internal materials development capability and help EnerDel to accelerate its product development.

Second, EnerDel has made its initial delivery of sample battery cells under its recently awarded "Phase I" contract from the United States Advanced Battery Consortium (USABC). Ener1 and EnerDel view this as a major step forward in its lithium-ion battery development program, which is key to its commercialization of battery packs for hybrid electric vehicles. EnerDel expects to deliver the next set of samples to the USABC during the next few months, as part of its continuing effort under its agreement with USABC. EnerDel believes that validating its product at this development stage through its work with USABC will help lay a strong foundation for potential follow-on work with the USABC and subsequent commercial acceptance of EnerDel's lithium- ion battery technology and products by hybrid electric vehicle manufacturers. EnerDel has also increased its collaboration with its sister company NanoEner Inc. (a wholly owned subsidiary of Ener1) for testing and development of advanced electrodes being produced by NanoEner that capable of very high power output using patent pending nanostructure material deposition processes developed by NanoEner. Such electrodes could become part of EnerDel's next generation of lithium-ion batteries for hybrid electric vehicles and other applications.

Finally, EnerDel has been notified of allowance of a US patent "Method for Cell Balancing for Lithium Battery" by the US Patent and Trademark Office. This patent will expand EnerDel's patent portfolio in lithium batteries to 30 granted and 68 pending patents. The inventions covered by the new patent make it possible for the cells of a battery pack to be charged to specific and individual SOC (state-of-charge) levels that are unique and optimal to each individual cell, based upon data collected during the battery's operation.